Twittercasting: Why Searchers are More Valuable Than Followers

“How many Twitter followers do you have?” is one of the most over-hyped metrics in social media marketing. What good is a large audience if they don’t act? If you are trying to attract an audience ready to actually do something, then you need to treat Twitter more like a search engine and a broadcast medium simultaneously.

There are 400 million active global monthly tweeters, and they perform hundreds of millions of Twitter searches every day. Twitter has a search engine that searches live, constant, global conversations, instead of static indexed web pages.

Twitter is a multilateral communications and broadcast medium that can actually be searched. And Twitter offers marketers something that no other search engine has: the hashtag.

By prefixing a keyword in your tweet with a hash symbol (#), you get a #hashtag.

The # takes your tweet beyond your followers and enters your #keyword into Twitter’s general timeline, where it can be found in a Twitter search. It can be in front of #one word, #ormanywordsstrungtogether. The more popular hash-tagged keywords get vaulted into the list of trending topics, which can be geo targeted as well. This is very much like organic SEO.

It’s great to have a large Twitter following, but it’s better to find people on Twitter who are actively searching for something that your product or service can offer. So use Twitter as a broadcast medium with a purpose—target your message to people who are actively looking for you “in the moment”. This is a pull-marketing approach to generating response in real time.

Followers are great because they might share your message with their networks and initiate a viral marketing effect, but they are a passive audience who might be looking for what you have to offer.

Searchers are actively looking for you, and they are more likely to respond if you Twittercast the right keywords with the right hashtags at the right time.